A new study by Juniper Research has found that the four biggest smartwatch vendors, Apple, Fossil, Fitbit and Samsung, will have their market share for connected watch shipments fall to 47% by 2023, down from an estimated 58% in 2018. The decline is linked to the growth of smaller players, including Garmin, Huami and Huawei amongothers.

While Apple will remain the largest single vendor in terms of shipments over the next four years, Huawei will enjoy the fastest growth, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 20%.

Juniper’s new research found that smaller players will thrive thanks to strategies tailored for niche markets, use cases or price points; while others are releasing premium smartwatches combining the best of fitness, outdoor activity and health features. The research group claimed that an intensified focus on healthcare integration will also contribute to the increase of smartwatch shipments over the next few years. Juniper forecasts that Apple and Withings will lead the way in terms of healthcare integration, followed by Fitbit and Garmin.

The rise of smaller players is linked to the rapid expansion of the Chinese market offering lower-priced smartwatches. Far East and China has now overtaken North America as the most dominant market, with over 24 million smartwatches shipped in 2018 against 19.5 million for North America. The gap between these two markets will deepen further by 2023, with Far East & China trebling its shipments by that time, according to Juniper.